Author ORCID Identifier
Clinkinbeard - https://orcid.org/0000-0003-1839-2877
The Social Science Journal
The AMBER alert system is likely affected by a number of psychological processes, yet remains understudied. The system assumes people will remember Alert information accurately and notify police, but psychological research on related phenomena (e.g., memory, willingness to help) indicates that people may not be able or willing to act in ways the promote the success of the system. In addition, the system is intended to deter child abductions, however, the system could prompt copycat crimes from perpetrators seeking publicity. The system could also cause a precipitation effect in which a perpetrator who sees the Alert could decide to murder the child immediately to avoid capture. Policy recommendations are made based on psychological research and theory, although more research is needed to develop the most effective system possible.
Miller, M. K., Griffin, T. W., Clinkinbeard, S. S., & Thomas, R. M. (2009). The psychology of AMBER Alert: Unresolved issues and implications. Social Science Journal 46(1), 111- 123. ** https://doi.org/10.1016/j.soscij.2008.12.004
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